Money Matters: How to eat more healthily for less

We’re all aware of the benefits of healthy eating but the misconception that doing so is prohibitively expensive is stopping many households from giving it a go. Here, Jodie, the Branch Coordinator at Leeds Credit Union, serves up some tasty tips on ways to eat healthier without spending a fortune.

With the ongoing cost of living crisis putting more pressure than usual on the nation’s wallets, convincing people to splash out on healthy food is easier said than done. But what many people don’t realise is that healthy food doesn’t actually have to be expensive; there are plenty of ways to eat healthily without breaking the bank. Here are some of them.

Be aware of the season

Fruit and vegetables are always going to be the starting point when it comes to healthy eating. To ensure you don’t overspend on them, only buy seasonal produce next time you’re in the supermarket – when they’re in season, they’re more readily available and therefore cheaper. Strawberries are a great, healthy option in summer; likewise parsnips in winter.

Keep it loose

As well as being better for the environment due to the absence of plastic packaging, ‘loose’ products – ie those that aren’t bagged and can be purchased individually – tend to be cheaper too.

Look for special offers

Items with long shelf lives are often worth buying when they’re on sale. Tinned beans and pulses, tinned tomatoes and healthy, high-fibre cereals are all worth keeping in stock for their healthy properties; even more so if they’re available at a reduced price.

And don’t forget that milk and cheese can be frozen, so don’t be afraid to buy more than you need when it’s on sale – you can store it in the freezer until you need it.

Buy cheaper cuts of meat

We love chicken breasts in the UK but thighs and drumsticks are every bit as tasty and significantly less expensive. They may take longer to cook but, when served as part of a healthy meal, it’s a small price to pay.

Shop around

Fresh vegetables and fruit can often be picked up cheaper in local markets than in the supermarket so shop around as much as possible before making a purchase.

Use your leftovers

If you’ve got some fruit that needs using up, don’t bin it, puree it all together and make healthy and delicious breakfast smoothies.

If you have leftover veg, use it instead of meat in your evening meal to make your dishes go further and cost less while still filling you up.

Buy own brands

When it comes to healthy items like yoghurt, own brand versions are often much cheaper despite tasting almost exactly the same as any branded equivalent. Don’t waste money for the name on the packaging.
Leeds Credit Union provides straightforward and affordable financial services to people in Leeds, Wakefield, Harrogate and Craven.

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